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Having Troubling Shooting Turkeys

Wondering if I could get some insight from you bird shooters. I keep finding turkeys and have some great content to shoot but I can't seem to focus to well on them. With bird running/walking, feathers moving, and grass moving around the bird it has made it tough. What steps can I take to get a sharper image with all this movement going on? Sadly they will not sit still and let you take your time to get a nice shot.





  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,412 AG
    What camera are you using.

    You need continuous one-point focus, very high ISO, shutter speed of 1/640 sec or so......and maybe in a pinch 1/400 sec with few keepers.

    You need a camera and a lens that can shoot in the dark (low light.) Again, what is your setup?

    Also, on my monitor it looks like your photos need a white balance adjustment. Shoot in a RAW format if you can and not JPG.

    Keep shooting and let us know what you have.
  • greenie-slayergreenie-slayer Posts: 850 Officer
    I am using a D3200 with a 70-300 mm lens. Setting in these pictures were ISO 400 , 1/1250 sec, single point or area mode and and single for for focus mode. I leave my white balance on auto because I still haven't learned to use it yet. I still shoot in Jpeg to because I cannot get my older version of photoshop to upload the raw images for editing. Still learning the camera and I know i have a lot to learn. If it could all be learned in the 4 months I have had the camera what fun would that be. I still find it hard switching setting on the camera for different situations and I tend to forget to change settings when I have a faster moving target.
    Looks like I will need to change up some settings. I know my camera does not do well in low light but I found these turkeys at 1 pm. I don't know why hunters get up so early in the mornings. I can find turkey and deer pretty much anytime of the day. Maybe I should start hunting more.
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,412 AG
    You need a more current version of Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) for the D3200, something like version 8, but you will have to check. What version of Photoshop are you using? It will likely need an update too.

    Try to not jerk the shutter button but "press" it. Twice the focal length inverted for a shutter speed is always a good idea, but you have that.

    Example. focal length at 300mm >>>>>> 1/600 sec minimum shutter speed.

    If it is dark-ish that particular lens will "hunt" focus and not always be spot on.

    The D3xxx and D5xxx series cameras are notorious for having to hunt through menus (slow) to make exposure changes. The D3xxx cameras are so inexpensive I use them as throw away cameras for time lapse on construction sites.

    Seems like you are ready for a more advanced camera - where the exposure changes can be made more quickly with readily available buttons at your fingertips. The sensor in that camera is very good and capable of great images if you do your part. Now with that said, try to control your breathing, don't slap the shutter, and update your ACR.

    Keep shooting and posting and asking questions. Good luck. We will wait for more.
  • sparse greysparse grey Posts: 1,751 Captain
    Sorry but I enjoyed your pics. Hoping that doesn't make me wrong.
    Ron Conner Release the fish, keep the memories. Once a Knight is enough.
  • greenie-slayergreenie-slayer Posts: 850 Officer
    Thank you for the advise WaterEngineer. I bought the D3200 because I am a beginner and it seemed to be a beginner camera. I can already tell i'd like more advanced setting but those camera can be costly and right now all my $$$ is being saved for my first house. Call it a Christmas present to myself.

    Sparse Grey wait until later next week when I can post the pictures from my trip to Costa Rica. I think you will like those photos. I have many I am proud to say I shot.
  • OnewolfOnewolf Posts: 657 Officer
    Did someone say Turkey photo?

    *** Tidewater 2100 Yamaha F150 ***
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  • GuidenetGuidenet Posts: 239 Officer
    That D3200 is just fine and does pretty well in challenging light. It's not ever the camera, just you and me. The only real difference between your D3200 and my D800 is I've got twice the sensor size, a lot more buttons and mine can stand more day to day abuse. As far as photographing turkeys, I could be happy with either.

    I loved your turkey shots and think they're just fine, sharp enough when looking at the average 6 bit monitor. I'd also continue leaving your white balance in auto. I've always felt white balance to be more a matter of taste rather than something which had to agree to some standard. We used to use warming filters all the time back in the film days and they were certainly not accurate at all. In Adobe Camera RAW, I just slide the temp slider until I like the look and the whites look as white as I want. I like scenics a little on the warm side and food a little on the cool side. People in the middle. :wink

    With regards to focus accuracy, beginners have a tendency to focus a little in front of what they intend, I've observed. I sometimes don't think they are paying attention where the focus points are or maybe they haven't locked them down. Also, focus can be grabbed by something slightly in front of the intended target, like some grass, for example. It's not always easy, so keep practicing.

    I also like your shutter speed up there. I shoot any birds at 1000th and higher, mostly higher, when I can. I also do something a little more advanced in that I don't generally set ISO much above base level these days. I do my brightening in post processing. This makes some of my shots look underexposed by up to 5 stops in exposure value which is the limit of my sensor. So in very dim light where someone might need 6 stops of ISO or ISO 6400, I might give it 2 stops of ISO and do the other 4 while editing by increasing the brightness level. This allows very low noise shots in dim light, but is somewhat of an advanced technique. It works best for Nikon, Sony and Pentax, but not so good for Canon because Canon tends to achieve ISO increases by adding a lot of gain to the signal after the data is captured. The others do it more by adding brightness after the data is captured. ISO is not really part of some made up exposure triangle.

    Anyway, have fun and keep being passionate. :)
    Nikon D800, D3S, D700, D300, Canon G1X, Sigma 15 f/2.8 Fisheye, Sigma 10-20 f/4-5.6, Nikon 16-35 f/4 VR, Nikon 28 f/1.8G AFS, Tamron 17-50 f/2.8, Nikon 35-70 f/2.8 AFD, Nikon 80-200 f/2.8 AFD, Nikon 70-300 f/4.5-5.6 VR, Nikon 80-400 f/4.5-5.6 AFS VR, Nikon 35 f/2, Nikon 50 f/1.8 G, Nikon 60 f/2.8 G Micro, Nikon 85 f/1.4 AFS G, Nikon 105 f/2.5 AI, Sigma 150 f/2.8 APO Macro, Nikon 300 f/2.8 AFS VR, Nikon 500 f/4 -P, Interfit Stellar X complete six light studio
  • greenie-slayergreenie-slayer Posts: 850 Officer
    Thanks for the info Guidenet. Hopefully I can get back out this weekend a practice.
    Onewolf I have seen some nice gobblers out where I am shooting just since I have to sneak up on them to get a shot I never get very close. I bet with a turkey call I could pull one in close. and get a nice shot like yours. It might be awhile before I can find another hen with chicks though
  • OnewolfOnewolf Posts: 657 Officer
    My turkey photo was taken from a kayak on the Wekiva river.
    *** Tidewater 2100 Yamaha F150 ***
    *** Native Watercraft Magic 14.5 ***
    *** ***
  • FlashFlash Posts: 12,646 AG
    Never had a problem, always in focus :wink

    Never seem more learned than the people you are with. Wear your learning like a pocket watch and keep it hidden. Do not pull it out to count the hours, but give the time when you are asked. --- Lord Chesterfield
  • lookinlookin Posts: 1,410 Officer
    Awesome pics, especially the gobbler pic. I like the roasted one too, but that looks like the domesticated variety.
    God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy
  • JonsredfishinJonsredfishin Posts: 3,111 Captain
    Corn works wonders...:grin
    One president put a man on the moon.
    Another president put a man in the Lady's bathroom.
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